Dutch fashion industry records highest sales growth in ten years in 2017

In 2017 the Dutch fashion industry recorded the highest sales growth of the past ten years. The turnover of clothing stores increased by a total of  4.6%, while the revenue of footwear stores grew by 7.8 percent.

Amsterdam's Kalverstraat, the Netherlands' busiest shopping street - Photo: Wikimedia

The revenue of retailers that are operating small and medium-size business increased by an average of 5.3%, larger chains recorded 4.5% more sales, according to a study by GFK commissioned by Dutch trade organization INretail.

In the clothing sector menswear recorded the largest increase, a 7.1% growth. Followed by legwear (+5.4%), kidswear (+4.8%), undergarments (+4.2%) and womenswear (+2.9%).

In the shoe industry turnover for women’s shoes grew by 9 percent, while men’s footwear increased by 4.7%. The sales growth for baby shoes grew by 6 percent.

Edwin Belt, sector manager fashion, said: “Many consumers gain confidence when the name of an online brand is also visible on the high street, which gives online sales an extra boost. We noticed the increase of online retailers that are opening physical stores and that [in return] physical stores are investing in their online presence with a web shop and on social media. This development is in line with consumer behavior, which always switches between the online and offline world. As a retailer you have to make sure that you are always in the picture. It creates the best revenue opportunities.”

Additionally, INretail reported that sales growth in fashion and shoes via online channels increased by almost a quarter. The growth at physical stores was 2.6% in the shoe industry and remained the same in fashion. For 2018, INretail predicts an average turnover growth of 2% for both fashion and shoe stores.

INretail is the largest trade association for non-food retail in the Netherlands and has over 5,000 members with more than 16,000 locations in the home and interior, fashion, and sports sectors.

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